The Gilded Serpent presents...


Lauren started early, studying ballet, jazz and classical piano. As her talents developed her interests expanded; Lauren quickly met and fell in love with percussion. Luckily for her, Lauren’s hometown of Duncanville, TX has one of the country’s top school music programs. Lauren’s passion evolved with intense study in both classical and world percussion. In high school she was the principal and ensemble leader in the highest achieving percussion department in the state of Texas. She consistently placed in statewide competitions in drumline, classical solo and percussion ensemble, mastering a wide variety of instruments from timpani to tambourine to Trinidadian steel drums.

Her next step in life was clear; this talented fish needed a bigger pond. Lauren successfully auditioned for a scholarship to the top contemporary music school in the world, Boston’s Berklee College of Music. Enrolled at Berklee, she quickly fell in love with World Percussion and Dance. While pursuing her Bachelors degree in Percussion at Berklee, Lauren obsessively took as many dance classes as possible. Her two greatest loves were belly dance (of course!) and West African Dance. As a percussionist and a dancer at Berklee she was an in-demand performer for many concert productions, including performances with Berklee’s famous West African Drum & Dance Ensemble and Berklee’s Middle Eastern Music Ensemble. Her studies in African Drumming and Dance took her all the way to Ghana, where she studied at the Dagbe Cultural Center under the instruction of Victor Agbeli.

Contributor to the Belly Dance Reader Volumn 1

Lauren also invested 3 years of training with Bellydance Superstar Amar Gamal. As one of the top dancers in Boston, Lauren was a regular at premier live music venues and Arab nightclubs. Her natural musicality and knack for choreography led her to collaborating with Meiver, the definitive Boston belly dance celebrity, on many choreographies and performances; these included regional performances with Turbo Tabla. Lauren’s love of performing belly dance quickly evolved into a love of teaching belly dance. In the summers of 2003 & 2004 Lauren taught belly dance fitness workshops for Healthy Kids Camps in North Carolina, a health and weight-loss camp for children focusing on health and self-esteem.

In 2006, Lauren followed her passion to Los Angeles, and began training with the one-and-only Jillina. Her unique talents were quickly recognized in L.A., and led to an early appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, performing with Chromeo; and in Ed Shul’zhevsky’s music video “My Baby”. When on tour, Lauren organizes intense and invigorating training sessions for the company’s dancers and management, focusing on injury prevention and overall fitness. Lauren's thorough teaching style has created a high demand for her unique finger cymbal and percussion curriculum, making important and essential rhythmic concepts more accessible to dancers of all levels.

Lauren is featured in the DVD releases "The Art of Bellydance, Live from Shanghai", "Bombay Bellywood: Live from Los Angeles", "Babelesque: Live from Tokyo" and "3DSS: Solos from LA," the first 3-D DVD of dance to be released. Her production credits include the DVDs “Mastering The Dance” by Amar Gamal, “Bellyqueen: The Bellydance Experience” and “Bellydance Underworld”; all releases by Hollywood Music Center/Peko Records.


Articles on Gilded Serpent by Lauren